Does a minor child travelling to Canada require a visa?

While a visa is of course required for any adult wishing to travel to Canada, the same is true for children. Indeed, if your minor child wishes to travel to this country, he or she will also need a legal residence permit such as a visa or an eTA.

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Canada Visa for Children

In this article, we will explain why this authorisation is necessary, what other documents you need to have with you when you travel and the procedure for applying for an eTA for your child.


Is a visa required for minors wishing to travel to Canada?

In Canada, children are legally subject to the same requirements for entering the country as adults. They must therefore have a passport and a residence permit such as a visa or an eTA. As we will see below, these children must also have with them other documents specific to minors under the age of 18.

The procedure for applying for an eTA for Canada is the fastest for both parents and children, as it is done directly online. Of course, it is the parents and guardians of the child who must apply for the eTA on their behalf. If the child does not meet the criteria for an eTA, particularly in terms of nationality, it is also possible to apply for a traditional visa by contacting the Canadian embassy or consulate in your country of residence.

Remember that if a minor attempts to enter Canada without the necessary documents or in the company of adults who are not, their parents will be closely monitored by the authorities.

Therefore, to avoid problems when crossing borders, you should ensure that your children have the required documents.


How to apply for a visa for a child?

Applying for a visa for a child follows the same procedure as applying for a visa for an adult. The parent or legal guardian of the child must therefore go to a website such as our partner's to fill in an application form. Before filling in the eTA application for your child, remember to answer "yes" to the question "are you applying for another person?" as well as to the question "are you applying on behalf of a minor child?

Several pieces of information about the child will be requested on this form, including

  • The personal data of the child's parent or guardian or legal representative.
  • Personal data about the child.
  • Your child's passport number.
  • Your or your child's email address.
  • Your child's name in the signature field of the consent section.

Remember that the fees for an eTA application for a child are the same as for an adult. They must be paid online by credit card.


What other documents are needed for a child travelling to Canada?

Minor children entering Canada as visitors must provide an eTA or visa, but also other legal authorisations and documents. The type and nature of the documents required will depend on the situation in which the child is travelling to Canada.

If the minor is travelling alone, he or she must present :

  • His or her own passport and it will not be possible to use a parent's passport, even if the information is included.
  • A copy of the birth certificate.
  • A letter of authorization in English, signed by both parents or the legal guardian, indicating the addresses and telephone numbers of the parents or legal guardians, the name, address and telephone number of the adult who will be responsible for the child in Canada.

If the child is travelling with only one parent, he or she must present :

  • His own passport.
  • A copy of the birth certificate.
  • A letter of authorisation in English, signed by the non-accompanying parent, giving the address and telephone number of the non-accompanying parent, and a photocopy of that parent's passport or national identity card with their signature.

If the parents of the minor child are separated or divorced and share custody of the child, the parent travelling with the minor should show a copy of the custody order. Ideally, he or she should have a letter from the other parent who also has joint custody giving permission for the child to travel outside the country.

In the case of a divorce with sole custody of the child, the letter of authorisation may bear only the signature of that parent. A copy of the custody order will also be required.

If one parent has died, the parent travelling with the child must have a copy of the death certificate of the second parent.

A minor child travelling with a legal guardian or adoptive parents must also carry a copy of the guardianship or adoption documents.

Finally, for a minor child travelling with a person other than the child's parent or legal guardian, the adult who is not the child's parent or legal guardian must have a letter of authorisation from both parents or legal guardians to supervise the child. This letter must include the addresses and telephone numbers of the parents and legal guardians. However, the letter does not have to be certified. However, a photocopy of the parents' or legal guardians' passports and national identity cards with their signatures must also be produced.


Can a minor child travel alone to Canada with a visa?

A minor child can travel alone to Canada with a visa or an electronic travel authorization (eTA) under certain conditions.

First, the child must have their own visa or eTA, which can be applied for online. Parents or legal guardians can complete the eTA visa application for the child, but the child must have their own travel authorization.

Secondly, parents or legal guardians must ensure that the child has the appropriate travel documents, such as a valid passport and proof of relationship or legal guardianship. Documentation requirements may vary depending on the child's situation and the country from which they are travelling.

It is also recommended that the child have a letter of consent to travel signed by the parents or legal guardians, indicating that the child has permission to travel alone to Canada and specifying the dates of travel, the purpose of the trip and the contact information of the parents or legal guardians. This letter may be requested by Canadian border authorities upon the child's arrival.

It is important to note that Canadian border authorities may refuse entry to a minor child travelling alone if they feel that this could put the child at risk or if there are concerns about the child's welfare. It is therefore recommended that you contact the Canadian embassy or consulate in your country for specific information on travel requirements for children travelling alone with a visa.

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As a web writer and globetrotter with a passion for travel and tourism, I have acquired in-depth knowledge of the procedures that are essential for travellers. I help travellers to complete all the formalities required for a successful trip, particularly when it comes to obtaining a visa online. With several years' experience in this field, I'd like to offer you some valuable advice to help you discover the world with complete peace of mind.


Frequently asked questions

Which travellers need a visa to travel to Canada?

All travellers from one of the eTA member countries to Canada need this residence permit to travel to the country. Please note that the eTA is only required for tourist or business travel. If you do not meet these requirements, you can apply for a regular visa to travel to Canada.

Is it possible to apply for a group eTA to go to Canada as a family?

It is of course possible to apply for a group eTA if you want to travel to Canada with your family. A specific form will be proposed in this case, when you visit the website of our partner. However, it will be necessary to provide personal information and data for each of the travellers accompanying you. The fees are also unpaid for each of these travellers and family members.

Where to find a visa form for Canada for a child?

You will be able to find a visa application form for a child wishing to travel to Canada on any website offering this type of application. This is the case of the partner site that we present on this page and which will give you access to an English form as well as precious advice to help you fill in your application and guarantee you get it as soon as possible.